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Extreme Rules 2014 match card preview: Daniel Bryan vs. Kane

The WWE World Heavyweight Champ needed an opponent for his first special event defense. Stephanie McMahon unleashed a demon with connections to The Authority and Bryan's past. Once The Beard's bride was attacked, it was personal. Now, it can only be settled under EXTREME RULES!

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WWE World Heavyweight Championship Extreme Rules Match

Kane vs. Daniel Bryan (c)

Daniel Bryan returned from his dream honeymoon only to find himself trapped in a nightmarish PG-rated horror movie. He and his wife are now being stalked by the devil's favorite demon, whose only objective is to tear Bryan apart limb from limb. There's only one definitive way to settle this kind of story - in an Extreme Rules match for the WWE Championship!

The Road to Extreme Rules

When WWE decided to go with Evolution versus The Shield and John Cena versus Bray Wyatt as the main attractions of Extreme Rules 2014, there weren't too many opponents left for Daniel Bryan's first title defense. The rest of the current heels like Alberto Del Rio and Magneto just aren't anywhere near Bryan's level.

Big Show, Kane, and Mark Henry are often the fallback options for WWE when they need someone with past credibility to temporarily fill a top spot. They are there to serve as a credible babyface or heel opponent who realistically has little chance to win. So instead of turning Sheamus heel or going with a fresh option like Cesaro, WWE decided to once again fall back on one of their past credible big men to temporarily fill in as Daniel Bryan's championship contender at Extreme Rules 2014.

Kane was the most obvious choice because he has recent history with Daniel Bryan. Daniel Bryan defeated Corporate Kane in three separate singles match between Royal Rumble 2014 and WrestleMania 30, and so in that sense Kane served as Bryan's primary stepping stone on the Road To WrestleMania.

So how do you put a fresh spin on one more Bryan versus Kane match in such a short time span? That's easy - put a terrifying red mask on Kane.

Stephanie McMahon berated Corporate Kane for his constant failures in these recent encounters with Bryan, and she goaded him into putting his mask on, instantaneously transforming him back into a wheelchair-tossing demon. He immediately began his evisceration of Bryan by tombstoning him 3 times against Stephanie's orders.

The next week Kane rose from the depths of hell, which is located under any WWE ring, and attempted to pull Brie Bella down into a burning abyss. An injured Bryan defended his wife by attacking Kane with a ringside wrench, but Kane was back on his feet in a matter of seconds.

Stephanie McMahon later apologized to Bryan for unleashing Kane's uncontrollable inner demon, but this did not stop Bryan's wife from hurling profanity in Stephanie's direction. And the true horror in all of this is that nobody even bothered to question WWE's doctors, who immediately cleared Daniel Bryan for competition even though he was wearing a neck brace.

What's at Stake?

Stephanie McMahon is pulling the strings this time in The Authority's latest attempt to derail Daniel Bryan's career. She claims that she has no control over Kane, but nobody really believes a word that comes out of her mouth.

And so Daniel Bryan finds himself defending the WWE Championship against a seemingly invincible horror movie villain in an Extreme Rules match. Will Daniel Bryan be able to put the demon down for good? Or will Kane drag Bryan's championship reign down into the fiery pits of hell?

Whatever happens next, Cageside Seats will have you covered with all the fallout from this latest showdown between the longtime friends and rivals!

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